PhilippinesJuly 2008 | Ratings Update
The Philippines' trade deficit is set to expand by a third to about US$11bn - the highest in at least 9 years - due to higher fuel and rice imports and weaker exports, according to the central bank. The new Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) forecast exceeds its previous estimate of a US$9.31bn gap set in May and the US$8.24bn deficit recorded last year. Meanwhile, BSP has also cut its estimate for the country's current account surplus for 2008 to US$4.2bn (2.3% of GDP) from an earlier estimate of US$6.9bn (3.8% of GDP). We are currently forecasting a current account surplus of 2.5% of GDP for this year.
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